The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 34, July 1930 - April, 1931 Page: 65
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History of Fannin County, 1886-1843
an area as large as many a state at present, was doubtless seen
there often on errands of mercy. John P. Simpson, chronicler of
early days in Fannin County, was frequently present in his capacity
Among the most important events at Warren during 1840 was
Fannin County's first sermon. It came about in this manner.
John B. Denton, who has been mentioned as a practitioner in the
law courts, was a Methodist minister. He was born in Tennessee
in 1806, but was carried to Indiana by his father when he was
quite young. The father died soon after moving from Tennessee
and the boy was apprenticed to a blacksmith who raised him under
the most adverse circumstances. But after being converted, Den-
ton gave up his trade and became a Methodist minister. His wife
taught him to read and write after the birth of their second child.
He preached in Arkansas and Texas from 1834 to 1838, but in the
fall of the latter year he settled at Clarksville and took up the
practice of law to provide a living for an increasing family.o1 The
Dugan family had known Denton in Arkansas, and upon his com-
ing to Warren in the course of his law practice he was invited by
Mrs. Dugan to preach to the settlers. He cheerfully made an
appointment for the following Sunday, when, in the little log stable
and schoolhouse, the pioneers heard their first sermon in Fannin
Another typical event in connection with Fannin's history was
the organization of Constantine Lodge No. 13, at Warren, Novem-
ber 3, 1840. The first entry in the minutes of the lodge possesses
great historic value:
Be it remembered that in accordance with a warrant from the
Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of the Republic of Texas conferring
upon Worshipful Past Master and Master D. Rowlett, of Mt.
Moriah [Lodge] No. 39, Dover, Tennessee, and Brother James S.
Baker, Senior Warden of Constantine Lodge No. 64, Lexington,
Tennessee; William M. Williams, Junior Warden of De Kalb Lodge
No. 9, Red River County, Texas, the Lodge being duly styled by
our worthy Brother Master Mason Seth Parker, late of St. John's
Lodge, Auburn, New York, the Worshipful Constantine Lodge
was duly and regularly constituted and the officers thereof installed
according to ancient usage. Brother Master Masons John B. Craig
of De Kalb Lodge, Red River County, Texas, John B. Denton of
10Fulmore, History and Geography of Texas Told in County Names, 34.
"Wilbarger, Indian Depredations in Texas, 395.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 34, July 1930 - April, 1931, periodical, 1931; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101091/m1/69/: accessed April 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.